Blue Merle Border Collies


New Member
tx_cowgirl;11715 said:
Technically, anyone with a border collie can have blue merles. They ren't a separate breed, and breeding merles to merles is a recipe for health problems for the pups. Blue merles are simply a rare outcome. Find a reputable border collie breeder, and see if they have either a merle stud or a merle bitch. Most breeders will let you reserve a merle puppy before the litter is born, and if they don't have one, they will give you the option of either waiting for the next litter or breeding another pair of dogs.
I have just this week brought home a blue merle cross bitch from a dog rescue centre and I found this post really interesting, I had never heard of a blue merle before and I thought they were a seperate breed. They are the most striking looking dogs and I think mine is totally gorgeous. but I have to say I picked her because of her temperament, she is the most loving dog and fantastic with my two boys. I don't really know much about blue merle's so if anyone can give me any interesting fact or tips it would be much appreciated. she has not yet been spayed and I was wondering if it would be kinder to let her have pups before I do, she would have beautiful pups and would be a great mum I am sure. :dognowink:


Staff member
no it's not kinder to let her have pups... she was a rescue, and we dont need any more unwanted pups in this world, and for every pup you breed, one will die in a shelter, so PLEASE get her spayed. Oh and congrats on the adoption! Merles are just a color, well not even a color, a dilution of a color, they can be seen in alot of breeds, Great Danes, Australian Shepherds, Border Collies, Collies, Shelties, Corgies, Dachshunds.... and many others. Merle is a dominant gene, so if it's present, it'll be showing. It can affect part of the dog, or the whole body, and you cannot predict where it'll show up. if your pup is blue Merle, then it is a black, or a black and tan genetically. where the black markings are, there is no dilution acting on the color, where the dog is "blue" is where the dilution is working on the color. One thing you NEVER do is breed Merle to Merle - EVER! you will have Double Merles, meaning they'll be mostly white, and a good portion on the pups will be deaf or blind or both, so just dont do it!

Merles are really neat looking dogs!


Honored Member
Congradulations on RESCUING a dog who needed a home!!! GOOD FOR YOU!!

I am with Sara, very very much so!! Please do scroll back on this very thread---and read my rants on DOG OVERPOPULATION!! We are killing like 6 million innocent dogs a year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! because America already HAS TOO MANY DOGS vs. the number of homes rescuing dogs.

6 million dogs a year, cuz people mistakenly thought, "Oh, my dog would make cute puppies" or "it'd be so fun for the kids to have puppies running around here.....for 2 months....." etc etc etc and not considering iF these dogs, and all the grand-dogs, will be able to find permanent homes.

There are already tons of "cute" dogs competing for available humans who will, like you did, RESCUE a dog vs. buy a dog.

For each dog your new dog created, a whole other tree of ever exponentially expanding dog population could increase beyond your wildest dreams, within a year or two. There are ALREADY tons of "cute dogs" out there, you do not need to create more, be a responsible dog lover, pleeeeease spay that dog.

Please do NOT contribute to the huge, sad, horrible DOG OVERPOPULATION IS a crisis, if you are somehow unaware?

Google "dog overpopulation" and weep.



New Member
The dog I posted WAS on Petfinder and he has since found a home. But my question of why is in he rescue obviously wasn't taken the way it should be. It isn't WHY did he end up with me? Oh, because he has temperament issues, or because his owners moved. The REAL question is, WHY wouldn't his breeder take him back?? ANY reputable breeder would take a dog they produced back. This one characteristic speaks LOUDLY for any breeder.

krazykaine3;19782 said:
Saying that all BC breeders that produce blue merles are only in it for the money is not only untrue, but ridiculous.
Find me one TRUE working breeder that breed AND works top trialing blue merle border collies. PLEASE! If you're breeding more than 1-2 litters every year (on an "as needed for working MY own farm or trials" basis), you're in it for more than "preserving the breed". You will not even begin to convince me that the types of breeders than are mass producing pretty candy colored border collies are not primarily in it for MONEY. I've been around this breed (and dog sports) WAY too long to know the truth behind these breedings.

Reputable breeders breed to preserve the breed and make each litter a better representation of the breed.
The word reputable does not belong in this sentence. REPUTABLE border collie breeders DO breed to preserve the WORKING border collie. The original breed we all love. Not the SPORT collie. The dog that's bred in various candy colors to excel in flyball and agility. THOSE are the breeders you're talking about.

Without reputable breeders, breeds would eventually go extinct.
Well, if you think the lines of "border collies" that are blue merle are of the same lines and working ability as the old, REAL WORKING border collies lines, you're dead wrong. The pretty candy colored border collies that the "reputable, responsible" breeders you're talking about are breeding is practically a totally different breed now.

Also, a dog that has papers doesn't mean that they came from reputable breeders.
I'm surprised that this sentence is even in the same post as all of the other "blue merle border collie breeders aren't in it for money" babble.

Dogs are not in rescues because of reputable breeders and certainly not because people get dogs from breeders. There are millions on dogs in animal shelters and pounds right now because of human ignorance, lack of responsibility, abandonment, puppy mills, backyard breeders and pet stores.
DUH! My point is, MOST of the breeders that breed pretty colored border collies ARE NOT NOT NOT reputable or responsible breeders. They're the very BYBs you speak of, whether you want to believe that or not.

Dogs are in pounds and shelters because of irresponsible mass breeding.
Uh, yeah. Like the breeders that mass produce pretty colored "sport" collies, right? Right. The very breeders you were just defending above.

Dogs are in pounds and shelters because parents gave into their little girl's pleas for a puppy, then she grew tired of the puppy and he was dumped at the local pound.
Because the breeder, who cares oh-so-much about the dogs she breeds "to preserve the breed," sold a puppy via a credit card over the internet and shipped it 10 states away to someone she's never met.

Dogs are in pounds and shelters because they made the "mistake" of being a dog. Maybe the dog peed in the house because he was never taught where to go. Maybe the dog chewed up furniture or dug up the garden because he was left alone for 12 + hours a day with little human affection and no physical or mental stimulation. Dogs are in shelters and pounds because people move and are too lazy to look for dog friendly housing. Dogs are in shelters and pounds because a new movie came out and the family wants a dog "just like the on in the movie." Dogs are in shelters and pounds because some people have babies and they "just don't have time anymore." Dogs are in shelters and pounds because some parents want their child to "see the miracle or birth" and then just dump the litter off at the pound when it's all over. Dogs are in shelters and pounds because some people don't spay and neuter their dogs and they get out and have puppies.
Yep, you're preaching to the choir here. Remember, I'm the rescuer in this post. Really, I know why dogs end up in pounds. It doesn't answer the real question, though. The question of why, if these breeders are so responsible and care about "preserving the breed," do the dogs end up in pounds and not back with their "responsible" breeders? The answer is because very, VERY few border collie breeders are truly responsible breeders. A VERY small percentage actually breed to PRESERVE THE WORKING BORDER COLLIE (no, that's not equivalent to "sport" collie).

Degrading a person and making them feel ashamed because they did not rescue a dog is unfair and uneducated. Responsible people have the right to choose to get a puppy and teach him/her everything. Telling a person that they should feel bad for not adopting a dog would be like telling a person that they are terrible because they chose to have a baby instead of adopt a child.
Maybe you're not replying to me at this point, I don't know. But I never said that rescue was the only way to go. But I can tell you right now, any blue merle dog you go out and but is NOT bred for the purpose of "preserving the working border collie." It's just not. Whether they want you to believe so or not.


New Member
sara;19896 said:
This dog is prob. a double merle you can tell if he actually is by looking at his eyes, if there is any blue spots/speckles he will be a double merle. how's his hearing and eyesight? he's gorgeous btw.. I'd want him if he was deaf!
The speckling in eyes has nothing to do with a merle-merle breeding. A LOT of merle colored dogs have parti-colored eyes and it has nothing to do with their eyesight. This dog is NOT the product of a merle-merle breeding.


New Member
tigerlily, thank you for all of your good info on rescuing. Just one piece of FYI:

IT is without the S you keep adding to the end.

Another piece of info, tigerlily is spot on when she says there is no profit involved in rescue. I run a BC rescue and the standard fee is $200. Every dog that leaves my house is spayed/neutered, UTD on all shots including rabies, microchipped, Heartworm negative (that means I've paid to treat the dog if it was positive). All dogs are crate trained and most are house trained. All get along with other dogs and have basic obedienve training. All dogs get high quality food while in rescue as well as flea/tick preventative and heartworm preventative. I'm always curious to know just where people think rescues make money. I mean, really. If you think rescues are making money off of their $200 adoption fee, just call your vet and get a price quote on this:

-DHLPP/Bordatella/Rabies vaccines
-Heartworm test (and treatment if needed)
-Interceptor HW preventative
-K9 Advantix flea/tick preventative

If the quote you get isn't enough to convince you, add on the cost of high quality dog food for a month (or however long we've had the dog).

If that doesn't convince you, add on however much you'd pay to take obedience class with your dog.

If that doesn't convince you, call an in-home trainer and ask them how much they charge for crate and house training.

And if all of that isn't enough to convince you that I don't make a dime doing rescue, call my vet and ask him what my rescue's balance is at any given time. We don't make enough in adoption fees to even begin to cover the rescue's running vet bill.


Staff member
ruffmuttk9z;20176 said:
The speckling in eyes has nothing to do with a merle-merle breeding. A LOT of merle colored dogs have parti-colored eyes and it has nothing to do with their eyesight. This dog is NOT the product of a merle-merle breeding.
You're right, I was crossing my info, speckling is a sign of Merle, in dogs that have it but aren't showing much or any except eyes, he looks as if he could be... alot of white, but borders can have that much white normally. If he was an Aussie, however, he would have to be a double, they dont have that much white without being a double... I have been researching Merle on mostly Aussie and Dachshund websites... sorry for the bad info!


Well-Known Member
Hello. I have not posted in months. I have a blue merle border collie. He came out of the Clan-Abby kennel in New Zealand. He is smart, beautiful and immediately became one of the family. We got Dusty when he was five from a border collie breeder/shower who wanted to retire him to a forever home. After we gave him time to settle in we noticed that he was fearful of things and was somewhat timid. He originally shown in Brazil before coming to the states. Several homes means several questions as to what happened to make him this way. I contacted Clan-Abby because I wanted them to know where he has ended up (he is still on their site). They informed me that the merlesdo have more of a timid personality then the standard blk/wht. He is happy curled on the couch, learning what toys are; in generally learning to be a dog. I see some naturally working instincts coming to the surface. He is wonderful and we will be forever greatful for all those who played a part in his journey here!


Well-Known Member
@ KrazyKaine3: What do you want a Border for? If it's for agility or work, one of my friends relatives breeds borders, and the male(they only have 1) is a merle, so the females(he's got two, one red and white, one black and white), often have a merle or two in the litter, but sometimes not. I know several good breeders(Aussies too) from before I found Kai, when I was looking into Borders, Aussies, and Germans.

~~*Harper & Kai*~~


New Member
rescue listings are so important... i recently learned my local shelter advertises itself as no-kill, but that just means they don't kill on a schedule. they DO kill animals who they don't think get on well enough with others, etc (even if they haven't lashed out)...


Well-Known Member
Our shelter tries for no kill. They are over filled now and I beliee they are going to have to put some of them down. I have mixed feelings on this as I recently rescued another dog bringing our total to 4. I have been researching small terrier breeds and finally have been focusing on the rat terrier and someone went to the shelter to drop of 3 5 1/2 month old Miniature Schnauzers. Yes I once again changed my mind to aid in finding one of them a home with us. Ozzy is wonderful. They took very good care of them, socialized them and even housebroke them. He is a lot of fun..but alas I have come to the conclusion that I have a home that may never have a fetch dog again! I promised my more dogs after Oz. I would not trade any of our dogs for the world, they are all unique.


Honored Member
Katz, good for you.

My dog is not super interested in fetch, either, but, he has learned to like it somewhat.

He had NO IDEA what the game was about for some time, and, even after he figured out the whole point of the game, he wasn't crazy nutz about it, BUT he has, over time, with our encouragment, because we get enthusiastic for him to play fetch, he has developed a fondness for it. (he very much enjoys anything that gets enthusiasm going, he is all about that, lol!)

He even inititates fetch on his own now.

Maybe if you try?
it did take a long time for Buddy to decide it was as good of game as any...he isn't crazy about it, but he likes it okay now. Maybe with some encouragement and time, and much enthusiasm you may indeed, have a lil fetch lover amongst your dogs after all???

but kudos again for saving a dog!! YAY!!